Quant Background

Prospect in IB-M&A

hey I have an undergraduate degree in finance. is a Master's in Quant Finance enough to get a job as a quant? also are quants really paid much more than regular investment bankers?

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Most Helpful
Apr 3, 2020

I think I should start copying and pasting responses I've either seen or written myself.

Quant is way too generic, that title is used so much more now that it has become popular. Quants can be "middle office" in the risk management space all the way to quant researchers generating alpha at hedge funds. So the requirements as well as the comp vary widely.

I'll focus on quant researcher, within this there are different requirements, some funds that are less "pure math" based hire more undergrads (math, physics, computer science, etc), while others are focused on PhDs. The masters degree is sort of this middle ground that isn't really a popular recruiting spot (not saying it isn't possible just less likely).

As for comp, yes the top places pay more, but there are fewer positions in this space and the volatility is much higher (and job security much lower). Out of undergrad it is generally 200-350 all in. And as you become more senior it is PnL based (you or fund depending on structure of where you work) and can get to 7 figures quickly.

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Apr 3, 2020

On the masters point, I'd echo ATL; I worked at a systematic firm for a couple of years, and when head hunters would talk to me they were happy landing me positions at fundamental shops, but were always hesitant to make quant introductions because I didn't have a Phd.
All that being said, there seems to be a lot of open positions for execution and risk management quants. You'd likely be a shoe in for any of those jobs.
I would also say there is a really long tail of firms, and the bigger market makers and funds can and do spend 200 - 350 post undergrad for the top talent, but I'd wager the average salary in the industry is closer to 150.

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Apr 3, 2020

There are so many people going for "quant" roles that typically a Ph.D. is required to stand out, especially for alpha/signal roles.

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Apr 3, 2020
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